Ya Gotta Have a Hobby http://www.yagottahaveahobby.com craft. cook. entertain. Tue, 07 Feb 2017 17:37:58 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.7.9 49143967 Fifty Shades Darker Girls’ Night Cocktail Party #FiftyShadesDarker http://www.yagottahaveahobby.com/fifty-shades-darker-girls-night-cocktail-party-fiftyshadesdarker/ Tue, 07 Feb 2017 17:37:58 +0000 http://www.yagottahaveahobby.com/?p=12844 Disclosure: Today’s content is in partnership with Universal Pictures. Ready to slip into something a shade darker this Valentine’s Day? Get ready gals, because Fifty Shades Darker is coming to theaters this Friday, February 10th. The sexy phenomenon is back, with even more passion and mystery, just in time for Valentine’s Day. Dakota Johnson and […]

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Disclosure: Today’s content is in partnership with Universal Pictures.
Fifty Shades Darker Girls’ Night Cocktail Party #FiftyShadesDarker #AD

Ready to slip into something a shade darker this Valentine’s Day?

Get ready gals, because Fifty Shades Darker is coming to theaters this Friday, February 10th. The sexy phenomenon is back, with even more passion and mystery, just in time for Valentine’s Day.

Fifty Shades Darker Girls’ Night Cocktail Party #FiftyShadesDarker #AD

Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan are back as Anastasia and Christian in the second installment of this fiery hot trilogy, and from the sounds of it, this film is gonna be a good one:

When a wounded Christian Grey tries to entice a cautious Ana Steele back into his life, she demands a new arrangement before she will give him another chance.  As the two begin to build trust and find stability, shadowy figures from Christian’s past start to circle the couple, determined to destroy their hopes for a future together. (Courtesy of Universal Pictures)

Sounds all kinds of thrilling and seductive, right?? Color us intrigued.

 

To get ready for the ultimate girls’ night at the movies, I invited my number one gal pal, built-in-best-friend-for-life–my sister–over for a pre-movie mini book club and cocktail party. My sis and I bonded over a girls’ night with the first Fifty Shades of Grey movie, so of course we had to get prepared for this coming weekend together.

Fifty Shades Darker Girls’ Night Cocktail Party #FiftyShadesDarker #AD

I set the table with a smokin’ hot tablescape and got the bar cart good and stocked.

Fifty Shades Darker Girls’ Night Cocktail Party #FiftyShadesDarker #AD

Creating a sexy, fun Fifty Shades Darker party atmosphere was super simple–I had everything I needed at home. Think all things slinky, silky, and sparkly:

  • Simple fabrics spread across the table instead of formal tablecloths–black silk, chiffon, or sparkly tulle really set a smoky-looking scene
  • sparkly jewels draped over every surface
  • Candles, candles, candles!

 

I even created three signature cocktails inspired by some of my favorite quotes from the book:

  • The Anything-but-Vanilla: a vanilla cake twist on the classic White Russian

The "Anything-but-Vanilla" cocktail from Fifty Shades Darker Girls’ Night Cocktail Party #FiftyShadesDarker #AD

“Nothing plain or old about vanilla–it’s a very intriguing flavor.”

 

  • The Sunset : a smoky mezcal and pomegranate twist on the classic Tequila Sunrise

The "Sunset" from Fifty Shades Darker Girls’ Night Cocktail Party #FiftyShadesDarker #AD

“We’ve chased the dawn, Anastasia, now the dusk.”

 

  • Silk Stockings: blood orange and lemon juice with liquid smoke, vodka, orange liqueur, and mezcal

"Silk Stockings" Cocktail from Fifty Shades Darker Girls’ Night Cocktail Party #FiftyShadesDarker #AD

“Sweet Jesus, you’re wearing stockings.”

 

You can find the recipes below to host your own girls’ cocktail night!

 

Girl talk + cocktails + wine + Fifty Shades Darker= Most. Fun. Ever. I don’t think I’ve smiled, giggled, or laughed until I cried so much in my whole life.

Fifty Shades Darker Girls’ Night Cocktail Party #FiftyShadesDarker #AD
This photo pretty much sums up our entire relationship, in case you were wondering.

 

Angie and I had a great time reading our favorite parts of the book out loud to each other and talking about all things Christian and Ana.

Fifty Shades Darker Girls’ Night Cocktail Party #FiftyShadesDarker #ADFifty Shades Darker Girls’ Night Cocktail Party #FiftyShadesDarker #AD

Can you tell we tend to get just a little overdramatic?

Fifty Shades Darker Girls’ Night Cocktail Party #FiftyShadesDarker #AD

We had so much fun with our Fifty Shades Darker cocktail party–we can’t wait to see it come to life on the big screen!

 

Will you be seeing Fifty Shades Darker? Let me know in the comments below!

Fans can get their tickets now on Fandango: http://unvrs.al/FSDTix

 

Recipes:

The Sunset

The Sunset Cocktail
Serves 1
A smoky twist on the Tequila Sunrise
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Ingredients
  1. 1.5 ounces mezcal
  2. 0.5 ounces triple sec, such as Cointreau
  3. 3 ounces orange juice
  4. Prosecco
  5. Pomegranate syrup**
Instructions
  1. Dampen the edge of a rocks glass with pomegranate syrup, then dip in coarse smoked sea salt (regular coarse salt will also work).
  2. Fill glass with ice. Add mezcal and triple sec and stir.
  3. Pour orange juice over top, then fill glass almost to the brim with prosecco.
  4. Drizzle 2 tablespoons of pomegranate syrup into the drink.
**Pomegranate syrup
  1. Combine 1 cup pomegranate juice and 1 cup sugar in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve sugar.
  2. Lower to a simmer and cook for five minutes, until mixture thickens.
  3. Allow to cool for 30 minutes.
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The Anything-but-Vanilla

The Anything-but-Vanilla Cocktail
Serves 1
A vanilla cake twist on the White Russian
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Ingredients
  1. 1.5 ounces coffee liqueur, such as Kahlua
  2. .5 ounces cake-flavored vodka
  3. .5 ounces vanilla vodka
  4. 6 ounces heavy whipping cream
Instructions
  1. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Combine ingredients and shake until frothy. Pour over ice to serve
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Silk Stockings

Silk Stockings Cocktail
Serves 1
Blood orange puree meets liquid smoke, vodka, and mezcal.
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Ingredients
  1. Blood orange cocktail base**
  2. 1.5 ounces vodka
  3. .5 ounces mezcal
  4. .5 ounces triple sec, such as Cointreau
Blood orange cocktail base
  1. 1 cup fresh squeezed blood orange or Cara Cara juice
  2. ½ cup water
  3. 2 cups orange juice (no pulp)
  4. Juice of 2 lemons
  5. ½ cup simple syrup
  6. 6-7 dashes of hickory liquid smoke
Instructions
  1. Fill a cocktail glass with ice. Add vodka, mezcal, and triple sec and stir. Pour blood orange cocktail base on top until glass is full. Garnish with a blood orange slice.
For Blood Orange Cocktail Base
  1. Combine all ingredients in a pitcher and stir thoroughly.
Adapted from Smokin' Sunset from LA's Staples Center
Adapted from Smokin' Sunset from LA's Staples Center
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For more from Fifty Shades Darker, find them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

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DeGustaBox November + Cranberry Apple Moscow Mule Recipe http://www.yagottahaveahobby.com/degustabox-november-cranberry-apple-moscow-mule-recipe/ Thu, 24 Nov 2016 13:00:22 +0000 http://www.yagottahaveahobby.com/?p=12801 Disclosure: I received this product free for purposes of reviewing, but all opinions are 100% my own. Happy Thanksgiving! The holiday meant just for eating is now here–I hope you’ve got your stretchy pants on. (You know I do!) Today I thought I’d share my DeGustaBox for the month of November, since it’s dedicated to […]

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Disclosure: I received this product free for purposes of reviewing, but all opinions are 100% my own.

DeGustaBox November + Cranberry Apple Moscow Mule Recipe #ad #DeGustaBoxUSA

Happy Thanksgiving!

The holiday meant just for eating is now here–I hope you’ve got your stretchy pants on. (You know I do!)

Today I thought I’d share my DeGustaBox for the month of November, since it’s dedicated to today’s favorite activity (and a favorite of yours and mine… at least I assume so, or why else would you be here?)–eating!

DeGustaBox November + Cranberry Apple Moscow Mule Recipe #ad #DeGustaBoxUSA

This month’s box came with all kinds of goodies that are perfect for this time of year, from coffee to ginger beer to yummy chips and snacks. I’ve turned my ginger beer into a seasonal version of one of my favorite cocktails to share with you today: the Cranberry Apple Moscow Mule!

DeGustaBox November + Cranberry Apple Moscow Mule Recipe #ad #DeGustaBoxUSA

We’ll get to that in a minute, but first my favorites from this month’s box.

  1. Oloves Healthy Olive Snack

DeGustaBox November + Cranberry Apple Moscow Mule Recipe #ad #DeGustaBoxUSA

I’ve been treated to these olives before (during my Pop Up Picnic experience here in LA), and I fell in love with them then–and nothing has changed! These are the most delicious little snack, and I love the convenient packaging.  These olives come in a bunch of different flavors, including Basil & Garlic, and they’re all-natural, gluten free, non-GMO, vegan, kosher, low carb, AND low sodium. Oh. And SOOOO good!

  1.  NibMor

DeGustaBox November + Cranberry Apple Moscow Mule Recipe #ad #DeGustaBoxUSA

Fruit and dark chocolate with no extra fillers? Count me in! I love smooth dark chocolate, and this bar is no exception. It’s the perfect size to slip inside my purse for a sweet snack on-the-go, and even better–it’s Non-GMO Project Verified! Love it.

  1.  Chef’s Cut Real Jerky

DeGustaBox November + Cranberry Apple Moscow Mule Recipe #ad #DeGustaBoxUSA

This jerky has been a go-to treat of mine for several months now since I discovered it at our local grocery store.  I love all the amazing different flavors–no boring jerky flavors here.  I love being able to have a high protein (12g!) AND delicious-tasting snack on-the-go.  It’s also nitrite free (so awesome!) and gluten free! Amazing snackiness.

Other treats included in this month’s box included Brianna’s Poppy Seed Salad Dressing, Honees Cough Drops, Ponti Glaze with Balsamic Vinegar of Modena, Beanitos chips, and Sharwoods Tikka Masala Simmer Sauce.  

Last but not least, this month’s box included Bruce Cost Spicy Ginger Beer, which I transformed into a delicious holiday drink, perfect for entertaining.

DeGustaBox November + Cranberry Apple Moscow Mule Recipe #ad #DeGustaBoxUSA

The Moscow Mule is one of my favorite cocktails, and with a little seasonal twist of cranberry juice and apple cider, it’s perfect for Thanksgiving or Christmas entertaining.

DeGustaBox November + Cranberry Apple Moscow Mule Recipe #ad #DeGustaBoxUSA

Cranberry Apple Moscow Mule

Serves 1

  • 2 ounces vodka
  • ⅛ cup cranberry juice
  • ¼ cup apple cider
  • Bruce Cost Ginger Beer

DeGustaBox November + Cranberry Apple Moscow Mule Recipe #ad #DeGustaBoxUSA

  1. Fill a glass (preferably a copper mug) with ice.
  2. Add the vodka and cranberry juice and stir.

DeGustaBox November + Cranberry Apple Moscow Mule Recipe #ad #DeGustaBoxUSA

  3.  Pour in the apple cider.

  4.  Fill the rest of the glass with Bruce Cost Ginger Beer to the top. Stir to combine, and enjoy!

DeGustaBox November + Cranberry Apple Moscow Mule Recipe #ad #DeGustaBoxUSA

That’s all there is to it!

DeGustaBox November + Cranberry Apple Moscow Mule Recipe #ad #DeGustaBoxUSA

DeGustaBox would be an amazing Christmas gift for the foodie in your life. At around $20 a month, you get a monthly delivery of some of the most delicious snacks and treats that DeGustaBox can find.  

For more from DeGustaBox, visit their website, or follow them on Facebook or Instagram.

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Getting Holiday Ready with my New Air Wine Cooler + Easy Apple Cider Mimosa Recipe http://www.yagottahaveahobby.com/getting-holiday-ready-new-air-wine-cooler-easy-apple-cider-mimosa-recipe/ http://www.yagottahaveahobby.com/getting-holiday-ready-new-air-wine-cooler-easy-apple-cider-mimosa-recipe/#comments Wed, 23 Nov 2016 23:11:10 +0000 http://www.yagottahaveahobby.com/?p=12777 Disclosure: This post has been sponsored by NewAir. However, all opinions expressed are entirely my own. The holidays are here, and I have never been more excited. For some reason this year I feel a little bit like a little kid again–but instead of being excited for the presents, I’m just excited for the whole […]

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Disclosure: This post has been sponsored by NewAir. However, all opinions expressed are entirely my own.

Getting Holiday Ready with my New Air Wine Cooler + Easy Apple Cider Mimosa Recipe #ad #newairusa

The holidays are here, and I have never been more excited. For some reason this year I feel a little bit like a little kid again–but instead of being excited for the presents, I’m just excited for the whole season. I love cooking, baking, decorating, and entertaining this time of year. I guess I really have turned into my mother! (And that is a very good thing!)

This year I am especially excited because we’ve been remodeling our kitchen and adding other updates throughout our dining room and living room. I can’t wait to show everything off!

Getting Holiday Ready with my New Air Wine Cooler + Easy Apple Cider Mimosa Recipe #ad #newairusa

One of my favorite new additions is the New Air ABR 960 Beverage Cooler. It is an amazing little unit that holds up to 96 cans and 29 bottles of wine–and it’s perfect for entertaining.  In my family, wine is a necessity for every holiday gathering–so I’m feeling VERY prepared with my New Air cooler.

As an avid wine drinker, I have had my eye on buying a wine cooling fridge for a VERY long time now. It’s so nice to have a space to keep my wine at the perfect temperature, not to mention a sleek, easy-on-the eyes way to store it, too.

Getting Holiday Ready with my New Air Wine Cooler + Easy Apple Cider Mimosa Recipe #ad #newairusa

I love that the New Air cooler can fit right under your counter top (it’s designed to be interchangeable with most standard trash compactors), or be free-standing. The temperature controls are super simple to handle, and there’s even a lock to keep little hands out of the grown-up beverages. The shelves are adjustable to accommodate any beverage of your choice, from soda to wine to craft beer and more.  You can even change the direction that your New Air cooler’s door swings open. How’s that for convenience?

Getting Holiday Ready with my New Air Wine Cooler + Easy Apple Cider Mimosa Recipe #ad #newairusa

Because my New Air Beverage Cooler is perfect for entertaining, I thought I’d share a super simple drink recipe with you today, perfect for the holidays: Easy Apple Cider Mimosas!

Getting Holiday Ready with my New Air Wine Cooler + Easy Apple Cider Mimosa Recipe #ad #newairusa

This twist on the classic mimosa comes together in just seconds, and gives a seasonal update that’s perfect for Thanksgiving or Christmas holiday celebrations. Plus, you can keep your champagne perfectly cool in a New Air Beverage Cooler–see what I did there?

Getting Holiday Ready with my New Air Wine Cooler + Easy Apple Cider Mimosa Recipe #ad #newairusa

To make your own Easy Apple Cider Mimosas, you’ll need:

 

  • Lemon Juice
  • Cinnamon sugar
  • Apple Cider
  • Champagne or sparkling wine

 

  1. Moisten the rim of your champagne glass with a tiny bit of lemon juice. Pour cinnamon sugar onto a plate, then dip the rim of your glass to coat with the cinnamon sugar.

Getting Holiday Ready with my New Air Wine Cooler + Easy Apple Cider Mimosa Recipe #ad #newairusa

  1. Pour your champagne flute ½ way full with apple cider.

Getting Holiday Ready with my New Air Wine Cooler + Easy Apple Cider Mimosa Recipe #ad #newairusa

  1.  Top off your glass with champagne to the top of the rim.

Getting Holiday Ready with my New Air Wine Cooler + Easy Apple Cider Mimosa Recipe #ad #newairusa

Ta-da!

Getting Holiday Ready with my New Air Wine Cooler + Easy Apple Cider Mimosa Recipe #ad #newairusa

Would you like a New Air Beverage Cooler of your own for holiday entertaining? You’re in luck–Enter now to win your very own, courtesy of my friends at New Air! Contest ends 11/30/16 at 11:59pm PST.

NewAir Fall Fun Giveaway!

Want more from New Air? Check out their website for more details, and follow them on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, and Instagram!

Happy Thanksgiving!

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LA Times’ The Taste 2016 http://www.yagottahaveahobby.com/la-times-taste-2016/ Wed, 23 Nov 2016 13:00:57 +0000 http://www.yagottahaveahobby.com/?p=12696 Disclosure: I received free tickets for LA Times’ The Taste, but as always, all opinions are 100% my own! This year, I had the amazing opportunity to attend the LA Times’ yearly gathering of foodies and amazing chefs and restaurants from the LA area: The Taste.  Five different events span three days, covering every inch […]

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Disclosure: I received free tickets for LA Times’ The Taste, but as always, all opinions are 100% my own!

LA Times' The Taste 2016

This year, I had the amazing opportunity to attend the LA Times’ yearly gathering of foodies and amazing chefs and restaurants from the LA area: The Taste.  Five different events span three days, covering every inch of the culinary landscape of Los Angeles.

As a food lover and fan of many LA chefs, it was a dream come true for me to attend. If you follow me at all on Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter, or have visited my YouTube channel, you’ve definitely seen all the fun that I had at the four events I attended.  I thought it would be nice to bring a little recap to the blog after all that, though!

LA Times' The Taste 2016

The first event I attended was “Field to Fork,” hosted by Amy Scattergood (Times food editor) and Michael Cimarusti (from Providence & Connie & Ted’s).  The event featured the endless bounty of California’s local produce and our chefs’ love of seasonal cooking.  There were so many vegetable-based dishes that were beyond anything I have ever tasted.  

LA Times' The Taste 2016

I loved Manhattan House’s crostini with fresh pesto and the brightest, most delicious cherry tomatoes I’ve ever seen.The Springs’ Vegan Ceviche and Kale salad was also amazing–and I’m learning that vegan ceviche is DEFINITELY one of my favorite things (thinking back to my Night Market experience, where the vegan ceviche was ALSO a fave!).

LA Times' The Taste 2016

Another standout was Tart’s Carolina Gold Risotta, with Rainbow Cauliflower, Purple Microgreens, and Stone Ground Mustard Cream, as well as Circa 55’s Golden Beet Ceviche, with delicious and earthy golden beets.

LA Times' The Taste 2016

 My favorite by far, however, was Ceviche Nikkei from Firefly, with crispy roasted Brussels sprouts, mint, and kimchi sake sauce. I still have dreams about that one.

LA Times' The Taste 2016

On Saturday night, foodies came out in droves for Dinner with a Twist, which combined LA’s greatest chefs with LA’s greatest cocktail mixologists.  The event was hosted by revered LA Times food critic Jonathan Gold, and featured restaurants ranging from Redbird to Broken Spanish to Vivianne and so much more.

 

LA Times' The Taste 2016

My personal favorites included Vivianne’s Saffron Fried Rice with Duck Confit; Knob Creek’s Booker’s Bramble cocktail with fresh blackberries, bourbon, and triple sec; and Komodo’s Paradise Pork Taco.

LA Times' The Taste 2016

 I loved getting a quick visit with my favorite ramen bar–Jinya–and also loved Faith & Flower’s Chocolate Hazelnut mousse for dessert.

LA Times' The Taste 2016

Sunday included another full day of events, with the Block Party kicking off the day, and Flavors of LA closing out the evening. The Block Party brought backyard cookout-inspired dishes, with everything from buttermilk fried oysters (from L&E Oyster Bar) to s’mores ice cream sandwiches (from Hinoki & the Bird).

LA Times' The Taste 2016

I loved the Thai Turkey Burger from Simmyz, the Ensaymada Project’s ube ensaymada (like a more bread-like cupcake), the delicious Egg & Avocado Breakfast Sandwich from The Hudson, Rainbow Cauliflower Taco from Trejo’s Tacos (you know, Danny Trejo? As in MACHETE???).

LA Times' The Taste 2016

LA Times' The Taste 2016

LA Times' The Taste 2016

There were also plenty of cocktails to be enjoyed, including more Knob Creek concoctions, Suntory Whisky, Ocean Vodka, and several wineries, including Coppola and Mark West.

LA Times' The Taste 2016

The closing event, Flavors of LA, paid tribute to the diversity of the LA culinary scene, with Thai, Filipino, Korean, Italian, and Mexican cuisines being represented, just to name a few.  I personally loved the lamb tacos from Aqui es Texcoco–and I’m pretty sure everyone else did too, judging by the line… and let me tell you–it was SO, SO worth it! Other hits of the night for me were the Slow & Low Indian Pork Curry from my fave guys at Badmaash, and the Chorizo Tostado at Guisados.  I feel like you can never go wrong with either of those places–everything they make is just beyond amazing.

LA Times' The Taste 2016

I also have to give it up for my favorite dish of the entire weekend–Chef Bruce Kahlman’s pork meatballs from Knead Bread & Pasta Co. Simple, amazingly flavorful, and just delicious beyond description.  It doesn’t hurt that Chef Kahlman is just a super cool dude.

LA Times' The Taste 2016

All in all, the weekend was an amazing success. That much culinary talent in one place is pretty much like heaven for a foodie for me!

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Check out my YouTube videos for more photos of this year’s 2016 The Taste:

 

 

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Freedom, Truth, Beauty, and Love: BAZ Vegas Brings It All http://www.yagottahaveahobby.com/bazvegas/ Mon, 21 Nov 2016 21:25:42 +0000 http://www.yagottahaveahobby.com/?p=12678 Disclosure: I received free tickets to Baz: Star Crossed Love for purposes of this review, but all opinions are 100% my own. Freedom, truth, beauty, and above all, LOVE–these are the ideals held dear at the new show stopping review, Baz: Star-Crossed Love at The Palazzo in Las Vegas. Baz: Star-Crossed Love intertwines the stories […]

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Disclosure: I received free tickets to Baz: Star Crossed Love for purposes of this review, but all opinions are 100% my own.

Freedom, Truth, Beauty, and Love: BAZ Vegas Brings It All

Freedom, truth, beauty, and above all, LOVE–these are the ideals held dear at the new show stopping review, Baz: Star-Crossed Love at The Palazzo in Las Vegas.

Baz: Star-Crossed Love intertwines the stories of Baz Luhrman’s most popular movies: Romeo + Juliet, Moulin Rouge, and The Great Gatsby. The stories are told in musical form, using the most popular songs off the movies’ soundtracks to tell their stories. Romeo sings Jack White’s “Love is Blindness” from the Great Gatsby soundtrack, Daisy (from Great Gatsby) sings “Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend” from Moulin Rouge, and so much more. It’s a pretty clever way of incorporating some of the most well-known moments of Baz Luhrman’s films.

Freedom, Truth, Beauty, and Love: BAZ Vegas Brings It All

A few weeks ago while I was in Las Vegas on vacation, I was treated to this show, and I have to say–it is beyond magical. The sets, costumes, and performers are truly out of this world. The production team has expertly brought these movie worlds to life, and the performers are beyond talented and perfect in their execution.

Freedom, Truth, Beauty, and Love: BAZ Vegas Brings It All

There are some major standout performers in this cast, including Joanna Jones as Daisy, Bri Cuoco as Satine, and LJ Benet as Romeo. I had to hold back tears as Benet “Love is Blindness,” after Romeo kills Tybalt and knows his love with Juliet is doomed. I also got chills as Jones sang personal favorite from The Great Gatsby soundtrack, “Over the Love.”

Freedom, Truth, Beauty, and Love: BAZ Vegas Brings It All

I loved how seamlessly each scene flows into the next, and how the storylines are easily told through such popular songs. It was great hearing Fergie’s “A Little Party Never Killed Nobody” and even Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit” sung by characters in a musical.

Freedom, Truth, Beauty, and Love: BAZ Vegas Brings It All

I also loved how the show has been staged. While there ARE tables on the actual stage, the actors themselves are constantly moving throughout the theater and are quite literally “in your face” for every minute of the action. The audience is surrounded by singing, acting, and dancing for the entire duration of the show. It’s very cool to be so close to all of the action.

Freedom, Truth, Beauty, and Love: BAZ Vegas Brings It All

I could not recommend this show more to anyone who is visiting Las Vegas. It’s the perfect fast-paced, party-atmosphere type show that will keep you enthralled through the whole show. You won’t regret seeing it–in fact, I’d love to see it several MORE times!

Freedom, Truth, Beauty, and Love: BAZ Vegas Brings It All

Baz: Star Crossed Love performs nightly at 7pm from Tuesday through Saturdays at the Palazzo Theatre. Visit their website for more information on tickets, schedules, cast bios, and more.

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Getting Back on Track with Health: Top 5 Tips + Clothespin Workout Jar #Healthy4School http://www.yagottahaveahobby.com/getting-back-on-track-with-health-top-5-tips-clothespin-workout-jar-healthy4school/ Wed, 09 Nov 2016 13:00:07 +0000 http://www.yagottahaveahobby.com/?p=12668 Disclosure: This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #Healthy4School #CollectiveBias School has been back in session for close to three months now, and I am SO glad–the summer just wreaks havoc on my daily routine and schedule. Being a teacher on summer vacation apparently tells […]

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Disclosure: This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #Healthy4School #CollectiveBias

Getting Back on Track with Health: Top 3 Tips + Clothespin Workout Jar #Healthy4School #CollectiveBias #ad

School has been back in session for close to three months now, and I am SO glad–the summer just wreaks havoc on my daily routine and schedule. Being a teacher on summer vacation apparently tells my body that it’s okay to let my fitness routine and healthy habits slide.  I hate to admit that this is the case, but it’s sadly true.  With school back in session though, I’ve been working hard to get my healthy habits back on track–I’ve got to keep germs and sickness at bay somehow (those pesky germs are just everywhere in the classroom)! Today I’d like to show you some easy tips I love to use to keep myself healthy all school-year long, with a little help from Advil® and Chapstick®.

Getting Back on Track with Health: Top 3 Tips + Clothespin Workout Jar #Healthy4School #CollectiveBias #ad

With the crazy busy schedule that I have, I have to make a plan and stick with it. Here are some of my best tips on getting back to healthy now that the school year has started:

1.  Fill your smartphone with workout apps.

From pilates to yoga to weightlifting and more, there really is an app for everything. I keep a yoga mat and small weights stashed in my bedroom so I can do a quick workout from home whenever I want.

Getting Back on Track with Health: Top 3 Tips + Clothespin Workout Jar #Healthy4School #CollectiveBias #ad

I use my smartphone as a great tool to lead me through whatever type of workout I’m feeling that day. There are plenty of free fitness apps available–you’ll definitely be able to find one that suits you!

 

2.  Plan your meals ahead of time.

This is a huge one for me, as I am very guilty of letting my inner hangry monster rear her ugly head.  If I do not plan my meals ahead of time, I will definitely pull my car through the closest drive thru and forget the whole idea of staying healthy.

Getting Back on Track with Health: Top 3 Tips + Clothespin Workout Jar #Healthy4School #CollectiveBias #ad

One of my favorite go-to make ahead meals are mason jar salads. I make a whole set of five on Sunday, and I’m good to go for the rest of the week.

3. Turn TV time into a quick workout.

Sometimes, getting to the gym just isn’t a possibility. Sometimes, I am just in desperate need of some TV time. My favorite thing to watch are hockey games, so I kill two birds with one stone and turn my tv-watching time into a workout.  Here’s an example of my hockey-watching workout:

Getting Back on Track with Health: Top 3 Tips + Clothespin Workout Jar #Healthy4School #CollectiveBias #ad

It’s so simple to create a TV workout of your own.  If you have a favorite TV show or sport, use common events, words, or actions that happen during each episode or game, and assign an exercise move for each of those things. It will keep you moving while you still get to enjoy yourself!

4. Make a workout clothespin jar.

Here’s a super simple, cute, and fun way to get a workout in.  You’ll need a jar, clothespins, and a permanent marker.

Getting Back on Track with Health: Top 3 Tips + Clothespin Workout Jar #Healthy4School #CollectiveBias #ad

On each clothespin, choose an exercise and a number of reps, such as 10 burpees, 20 mountain climbers, 25 crunches (so on and so forth–you get the idea!). Write the number of reps and exercise onto each clothespin and clip the pin to the rim of the jar with the lettering facing in. 

Getting Back on Track with Health: Top 3 Tips + Clothespin Workout Jar #Healthy4School #CollectiveBias #ad

For my jar, I used enough clothespins to fill the entire rim of the jar, about 10-15 pins.

Getting Back on Track with Health: Top 3 Tips + Clothespin Workout Jar #Healthy4School #CollectiveBias #ad

To complete your workout, simply choose a clothespin and perform the exercise the given number of times. When you’re done, place the pin inside the jar. Ta-da!

Getting Back on Track with Health: Top 3 Tips + Clothespin Workout Jar #Healthy4School #CollectiveBias #ad

When you get really in shape, repeat the process 2-3 times total for a killer at-home workout.

 

5.  Stock up on at-home health-helpers.

I always keep my medicine cabinet fully stocked, so that I’m ready for whatever germs life throws in my direction.  Two things I always have on hand? Advil® Liqui-Gels® and Chapstick!

Getting Back on Track with Health: Top 3 Tips + Clothespin Workout Jar #Healthy4School #CollectiveBias #ad

With all this exercising I’ve been doing to get back on track, I definitely need my Advil® on hand, because “Nothing’s faster on tough pain*” *Among OTC pain relievers. Use as directed. Those little Liqui-Gels® are super handy too, when it comes to relieving the headaches brought on my teaching middle school art.

Getting Back on Track with Health: Top 3 Tips + Clothespin Workout Jar #Healthy4School #CollectiveBias #ad

I also love keeping Chapstick® on hand during this time of year to keep my lips healthy and smooth. Back-to-school has meant back to a LOT of talking for me, and my dry lips are ever-so-thankful for the relief that Chapstick® brings, especially since it’s like “Skincare for lips™.”

Getting Back on Track with Health: Top 3 Tips + Clothespin Workout Jar #Healthy4School #CollectiveBias #ad

Lucky for me, it’s super easy to find these and other great Pfizer health-helpers at my local Walmart. I pick them up right in the same aisle too, which makes them super convenient.

Getting Back on Track with Health: Top 3 Tips + Clothespin Workout Jar #Healthy4School #CollectiveBias #ad

What are your top tips for staying healthy now that we’re back in school? Share your ideas in the comments below! You can also check out more from Advil® and Chapstick® at Walmart by visiting their site here and here.

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Chateau St. Michelle Wines at DryBar http://www.yagottahaveahobby.com/chateau-st-michelle-wines-drybar/ Thu, 06 Oct 2016 12:00:24 +0000 http://www.yagottahaveahobby.com/?p=12648 Disclosure: We were hosted by DryBar and Chateau St. Michelle Wines for this event, but as always, all opinions are 100% our own. Michelle’s note: Please welcome my sis, Ange, for today’s post!  I’ve always been a super fan of Riesling, especially the kind that goes with chocolate cake. So when Chateau St. Michelle Wines […]

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Disclosure: We were hosted by DryBar and Chateau St. Michelle Wines for this event, but as always, all opinions are 100% our own.

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Michelle’s note: Please welcome my sis, Ange, for today’s post! 

I’ve always been a super fan of Riesling, especially the kind that goes with chocolate cake. So when Chateau St. Michelle Wines invited YaGottaHaveaHobby to their Riesling event, we were of course, excited to say the least. Not to mention, the event was being held at Drybar, one of our favorite spots in LA to get an amazing blow out! Double bonus!

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The evening began with a glass of Rose and a cheese platter that was placed so perfectly, you felt guilty about rummaging around in the prosciutto. I was then brought over to my stylist, William, who would be giving me the “Dirty Mai Tai” (i.e. the messy version of the messy beach wave style) blowout. If you’ve never been to Drybar, they have different hair styling choices that are named after your fave alcoholic bevvies, like the “Southern Comfort” which is big voluptuous curls, or the sleek and smooth “Manhattan.” Anyway you like it, they give you a nice wash and style.

While your stylist is washing (i.e. massaging) your hair, they’ll let you know which products they are using – in case you decide to become obsessed with them and purchase them on your way out (we couldn’t leave without the Triple Sec texturizing spray!)

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As I sat enjoying my blowout, I was given three different kinds of Chateau St. Michelle Wines – the first, the Dry Riesling 2015, which was paired with a crab cake and a vegetarian spring roll. I couldn’t participate in the crab cake, because you know, death and stuff, but it was delicious bouncing off the flavors of the spring roll with it’s dry citrus notes. It was said to go perfectly with Asian spices, and boy were they right! Yum!

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Next, I had the Eroica Riesling 2014, which was paired with a curry chicken wonton. Normally, I’m not one for curry, but this little bite of magic paired with the wine changed my mind. This one was said to go well with Indian spices, and again, they were so right.

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Lastly, my favorite of the bunch was the Harvest Select Sweet Riesling 2014. Paired with the tiniest dainty little poached pear and brie tart. This was the stand out of the evening – and no joke, I would have eaten the entire platter of tarts and about 700 bottles of the wine to go with. I didn’t want to be the pig of the party, but I did seriously think about smuggling a few tarts in my purse…

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All in all, the evening ended with a full tummy, a great head of hair, and a cute little bag that said “Everything happens for a Riesling,” meaning I guess I’m hooked on Riesling for a Riesling now. (See what I did there?)

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What’s Happening This Weekend: Boo at the Zoo! http://www.yagottahaveahobby.com/whats-happening-weekend-boo-zoo/ Fri, 30 Sep 2016 16:27:44 +0000 http://www.yagottahaveahobby.com/?p=12642 This Halloween season, the LA Zoo will be offering special spooks and lots of fun in their Boo at the Zoo celebration.  Starting October 1st from 10am-4pm, the zoo will offer daily spooky caves and a cornstalk maze, with special activities on weekends such as the “Mad Science Fire and Ice Show” and the “Musical […]

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This Halloween season, the LA Zoo will be offering special spooks and lots of fun in their Boo at the Zoo celebration.  Starting October 1st from 10am-4pm, the zoo will offer daily spooky caves and a cornstalk maze, with special activities on weekends such as the “Mad Science Fire and Ice Show” and the “Musical Monster Mash-Up” Puppet Show. The month-long event is sponsored by 99 Cent Only Stores.  Activities are free and included with LA Zoo admission.

 

Offered daily, the one-of-a-kind Spooky Cave experience in the Winnick Family Children’s Zoo will be a twist on a traditional haunted house.  There’ll be spooky projects of slithering snakes, creepy crawly spiders, and eerie sound effects. A cornstalk maze will also be part of the daily offerings, with a haunted barn and a freaky frame photo opp.

 

For those who really love their creepies and crawlies, the Zoo will offer animal encounters with their “Animals and You” encounters, featuring Halloween-friendly creatures like tarantulas, scorpions, and snakes! Shows will be held daily at 10:45am and 11:45am, with an added show at 12:45 on weekends.

 

Weekends at Boo at the Zoo will feature even more Halloween-inspired fun, with the “Mad Science Fire and Ice Show,” held at 2:30pm every Saturday and Sunday.  Kids will be on the edge of their seats as fire appears from thin air, ice remains unmelted, potions bubble and eerie fog envelops the stage.  

 

Special Halloween-themed animal feedings will be held this month as well.  Plant-eating animals will receive fresh pumpkins as a treat, while carnivores will receive carcasses (parental discretion is advised!).

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Later in the month (Oct 22-23 and 29-30), Disney will get in on the Boo at the Zoo action, with special Moana themed stations.The party will also feature DJs, craft stations, breakdancing, games and prizes for the whole family.

 

The month-long celebration will conclude with trick-or-treating (costumes encouraged!) on October 29th and 30th.

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For more information, including show schedules and animal feedings, please visit http://www.lazoo.org/BOO/.

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What’s Happening This Weekend: Eastside Food Festival http://www.yagottahaveahobby.com/whats-happening-weekend-eastside-food-festival/ Fri, 30 Sep 2016 15:21:02 +0000 http://www.yagottahaveahobby.com/?p=12635   If you’re in the LA area and looking for a delicious experience, it’s time to check out the 3rd Annual Eastside Food Festival! This year’s festival will be held at Mack Sennett Studios on Sunday, October 2nd from 5-8pm, with a VIP hour beginning at 4pm.  The Eastside Food Festival celebrates the unique and […]

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If you’re in the LA area and looking for a delicious experience, it’s time to check out the 3rd Annual Eastside Food Festival!

This year’s festival will be held at Mack Sennett Studios on Sunday, October 2nd from 5-8pm, with a VIP hour beginning at 4pm.  The Eastside Food Festival celebrates the unique and diverse culture (and FOOD!) of LA’s Eastside neighborhoods.  

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The Eastside has become one of the trendiest and fastest growing neighborhoods in the past few years. It’s one of my favorite places to explore, with unique shops and stores, and of course–some of the hottest and trendiest restaurants to open in recent memory.  I love how cutting edge everything has become in this neighborhood, and I absolutely recommend checking the Eastside Food Festival out this weekend!

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Some of this year’s confirmed vendors include:

  • Angel City Brewery
  • Better Booch
  • Boxed Water
  • Buttonmash
  • Challa Hub
  • Clover Juice
  • Creme Caramel
  • EL Condor
  • Go Get Em Tiger
  • Homestate
  • Jeni’s Ice Cream
  • Kettle Black
  • Kitchen Mouse
  • Knuckle & Claw
  • Little Beast
  • Lord Jones
  • Momed
  • Ohana Poke Co
  • Our/ Los Angeles Vodka
  • Pok Pok
  • RBTA
  • Same Same Thai
  • Sawyer
  • Silverlake Wine Shop
  • Starry Kitchen
  • Sticky Rice
  • Toto Verde
  • Trois Familia
  • Wood pizza
  • Ventura Spirits

This year, in addition to the indoor happenings of discussions and Q&A panels, an outdoor celebration will be happening featuring grilling and The Big Green Egg.  This stage will feature Ray Garcia of Broken Spanish and B.S. Taqueria serving up the delicious Cauliflower al Pastor (from B.S. Taqueria), as well as Steven Samson of Sotto and Rossoblu grilling up some Grilled Lamb Shoulder with Mint Salsa Verde.

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Another cool addition this year is the live podcasting of The Super Amazing Restaurant Show podcast, with chefs Alvin Cailan (Eggslut) and Nakul and Arjun Mahendro of Badmaash (eeeeek–allow me a short fangirl moment!).  These guys tell it like it is in the restaurant business–and they’ll be broadcasting as part of this Sunday’s festival events.

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General Admission tickets will be $75 at the door and include admission and all you can eat and drink soft drinks from 5-8pm, with 3 bar tickets included.  VIP Admission will be $105 at the door, and will include VIP hour from 4-5pm, with exclusive tastings, a VIP lounge, a VIP gift bag, and 5 bar tickets.  

 

I’ll be attending this weekend’s festival, so if you drop by, make sure you say hi! You can follow my adventures as well on my Snapchat: @yagottahave!

 

For more information on the Eastside Food Festival, visit their website at www.EastSideFoodFest.com.

 

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The Los Angeles Food & Wine Festival 2016: Night Market http://www.yagottahaveahobby.com/los-angeles-food-wine-festival-2016-night-market/ Thu, 29 Sep 2016 12:00:05 +0000 http://www.yagottahaveahobby.com/?p=12612 Disclosure: I received a media pass for purposes of this post.  I received no compensation, and as always, all opinions are 100% my own.   One of the most highly anticipated foodie events of the year, the Los Angeles Food & Wine Festival, happened just a few weeks ago here in Los Angeles, and I […]

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Disclosure: I received a media pass for purposes of this post.  I received no compensation, and as always, all opinions are 100% my own.

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One of the most highly anticipated foodie events of the year, the Los Angeles Food & Wine Festival, happened just a few weeks ago here in Los Angeles, and I was lucky enough to attend some of the festivities!

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The annual food festival took place over four days in locations ranging from Grand Ave in Downtown LA to Barker Hangar in Santa Monica.  The event, sponsored by Coastal Luxury Management, brought together some of the most renowned chefs of today: from Duff Goldman to Tyler Florence, Brian Malarkey to Bruce Kalman.

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Being a huge foodie fan, I’ve waited all year for the LAFWF to return for its 6th year. The events were kicked off by Emeril Lagasse’s “Eat the World,” which highlighted and showcased his Amazon Prime show, alongside amazing bites like Corn Agnolotti, Emeril’s Fried Chicken, and fresh shaved truffles at Patina.

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The conclusion of the weekend was the Grand Tasting, held at the Barker Hangar in Santa Monica.  The hit of that event was DEFINITELY Salt & Straw’s Apple Pie a la Mode, as well as the over-the-top dessert bar from The Peninsula Beverly Hills.

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I was lucky enough to attend Friday night’s eclectic event, “Night Market,” hosted by Brian Malarkey and Jet Tila. With a world market feel and a huge variety of chefs being featured, there were so many highlights of the night.

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One of my favorites was the Frozen Foie Gras with Strawberry Jam and Candied Pistachio from Paul Lee at Patina. I’ve had foie gras only a few times in my life before, and this presentation and unusual flavor combination definitely stood out as one of the hits of the night.

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My usual favorites, BadMaash, served up a delicious lamb burger with spicy mayo on brioche, and the lamb burger from CA Grown with tangy and creamy feta cheese didn’t disappoint either.

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One of my favorite hangout spots was the Lexus Culinary Lounge.  With a cute, ice cream social themed photo opp, and a partnership with Sweet Lucie’s ice cream, Lexus was the sponsor that hit it out of the park, in my opinion.  

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Guests could choose from ice cream sandwiches, several flavors of Sweet Lucie’s ice cream (including my favorite, Vegan Earl Grey!), as well as Adult Ice Cream Soda Floats with Not Your Father’s Ginger Ale or Root Beer.

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My cocktail favorite was definitely Hendrick’s Gin.  Not only was their presentation on point, but their trio of gin-based punches were delicious and refreshing.  I loved the punch bowl filled with fresh fruits, and thought the kiwi was an unexpected and interesting twist to fresh cocktails.

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Other highlights of the night included the many different wine tasting options from wineries all around the California area, handrolled sushi from Blue Ribbon Sushi, and the Vegetable Ceviche from DIRT.

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This year’s Los Angeles Food & Wine Festival was even better than ever, and definitely set the bar high for next year’s festivities.  It was a beautiful night with an amazing opportunity to mingle with some of the finest chefs the LA area has to offer. I highly recommend you keep your eye out for next year’s LAFWF!

For more from the Los Angeles Food & Wine Festival, visit their website here.  You can also follow them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for all the latest news and updates on the 2017 festival.

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